Need to Know
- Property settlements refer to how assets and liabilities (owned separately or together) are divided following separation.
- The process considers how superannuation will be split and how payments for spousal or de facto maintenance will be paid.
- Time limits apply for married and de facto couples to make applications for property settlements.
- You must be honest about your assets, liabilities and financial resources and make full and frank disclosure to the other party and the Court.
- We can help negotiate this process as smoothly as possible to minimise the cost and impact on financial settlements.
Avoid costly and drawn-out legal proceedings
We want you to retain as much of your share as possible while securing your freedom to make your own decisions in future.
Avoiding litigation is our priority.
We help you work out how to best divide property, income, debts and other financial resources like superannuation so that both parties can access a fair settlement. We then document your agreement with a Binding Financial Agreement or Consent Order so you can move forward with confidence.
If an agreement can’t be reached, an application is made to the Court for a Judge to decide.
The Family Law Courts require parties to engage in meaningful negotiations to reach an agreement before filing an application to the Court. Our family law property experts know how the Court views property settlement matters and can advise you on all aspects of the process.
What is the process?
The Family Law Courts apply a common legal framework to determine how to divide the assets as follows:
- Evaluate whether it is just and equitable to adjust either party’s share of the property interests
- Identify and value the total property pool (assets, liabilities and financial resources – including superannuation) of both parties
- Determine each party’s contribution (both financial and non-financial)
- Assess each party’s future financial needs
- Consider the effect of the proposed adjustment and whether it is just and equitable
Remember: time limits apply. Applications for property division must be made within one year of divorce for married couples and within two years of separation for de facto couples.
Prenups, cohabitation or separation agreements (Binding Financial Agreements)
Few people enter a relationship thinking about who gets what if the relationship comes to an end. But the reality is that if your relationship breaks down, you will need to work out how to separate your financial interests.
Prenups, cohabitation and separation agreements (commonly referred to a Binding Financial Agreements) offer certainty around how you will manage your future affairs in the event of separation, without the costly and time-consuming intervention of the Court.
A Binding Financial Agreement is a legally binding agreement that seeks to finalise certain financial matters before marriage (pre-nuptial agreement), entering a de facto relationship (co-habitation agreement), during or after a marriage or de facto relationship (separation agreement) and covers matters including:
- How joint and separate assets, liabilities and financial resources are divided (including superannuation)
- How maintenance (financial support) will be paid
- Any other financial issues
By entering a financial agreement, you forgo the opportunity to seek a property settlement or claim maintenance from the Court if your relationship breaks down as these matters are deemed to be already determined. However, you may be able to apply to have the agreement set aside if strict legal requirements have not been followed.
Get the facts on property settlement
Knowledge is key – but not everything you hear about property settlements will apply to you. Get advice before you make any decisions that could impact your future financial position.
Our family law experts can advise you on the best approach for your unique family and financial circumstances.
Connect with our experienced family law services Gold Coast today. Book a free 60 minute initial consultation with Quinn Family Law.